Red barn w/quilt
My barn quilt is fading and needs some work. Since putting mine up two years ago, more are springing up in the county but not as many as I would like to see. Our local library has a local artist painting them for a price and the proceeds benefit the library. I love this idea for the library and spreading the quilting heritage throughout the county. I’ve decided to start another one for the same barn but for the other end of the barn. This will be seen as you go either way past the farm. I also want to put one on all of the other barns but will probably do two each summer.
I’ve just got to figure out how to keep them from fading and peeling. Apparently the exterior paint and three coats of polyurethane aren’t enough to fight Mother Nature’s effect on them. Research is needed before I start the new board. I’m told that rustoleum latex paints are the best and I used a basic exterior paint. Experimentation will be the true test.
I love seeing them all over the county and this winter I’ll being looking for the pattern that suits our farm or maybe use a pattern in one of my quilt like I did for the first barn quilt.
Has someone ever given you something special, made you a quilt, embroidered some pillow cases, or anything along those lines? Do you use them? Do you display them? Are they hidden away for no one to see but you? My Mom used to be like that. My Mom’s grandmother, some of my friends do that and even my husband does that. I made him the nine patch quilt year before last and he was so proud of it. I was proud ot it but it isn’t being used. It isn’t even out where he or someone else could see it. I’m disappointed!! Not because I wanted to show it off, though! I made it with love and to keep him warm! He says he doesn’t want to get it dirty. For heaven’s sake, it’s washable! It’s made of fabric and polyfil. It’s warm!
The following quilt I made for our bed about five years ago and was my first attempt at piecing a complicated pattern. I loved it and I wash it about every two weeks and except for fading a little it’s still like new. I wash it so often because Sassy our cocker spaniel sleeps between us and the quilt desperately needs the washing after two weeks. But, like Eddie’s quilt it’s beautiful, it was made with love and I made it to be used, not stuck in a trunk waiting for me to die!!
I have beautiful dishes that belonged to my grandmother, Eddie’s aunt, my Mom and yes, I show them off but I always use them too! Things of beauty are meant to be used, shared, admired. Don’t stick them away!! They may not be as admired when your gone. They may be sold, passed on, handed down but for heaven’s sake use them!
I’ve got a hobby that started just a few years ago in earnest called quilting. My grandmother Bradley used to quilt for the whole family. She saved every scrap of fabric leftover from making grandchildren’s and great grandchildren’s clothes. I think I got my talent from her as none of the other family on my mom’s side quilted that I know of and my Mom had to many kids (7) to think about sewing for a hobby; it was only done by necessity. I love the peace it brings me and the satisfaction of piecing together bits of fabric and making something beautiful. Here are a few that I have pictures of that I’ve made.
Blue & White Shock
Splash of color for hubby!
Country Hues for my son-in-law.
My first work!!
Guest room lavender!
I’ve made a quilt for my son but don’t have pictures of it. I made my first quilt with blocks of candlewicking of mauve and pink butterflies and used unbleached muslin as the background and backed it with mauve flannel. It was so warm but I can’t find it. I’ve made two baby quilts and here they are.
Melisa Kele’s baby quilt
Ripepi baby quilt
Now, I’m inspired to get busy and quilt some more. The hardest part about making a quilt for me is deciding on the pattern and then selecting the colors to make it pop. Hopefully 2013 will be filled with quilting masterpieces.
My secret project is complete!! I’m so excited to show you my latest project. I have in the last few years developed a passion for the beautiful barn quilts I’ve seen as we’ve took drives through the gorgeous farmland in West Virginia.
I decided about a month before my vacation in May that I was going to have one on the barn at the entrance of our farm. Needless to say I didn’t think it was going to take two months to complete it but I finally did last weekend and my wonderful husband had a carpenter friend of our put it on the barn on Friday while I was at work. I was absolutely flabbergasted when I came home from work on Friday afternoon and it was staring me in the face along with the “CALDWELL FARM” sign I had painted and our “Century Family Farm” sign. You’ll see pictures of all three at the end of this post but first I thought I would write about the steps it took to get the “quilt” finished.
When we told the kids what I was working on my son-in-law wondered why I thought a quilt would last very long nailed to the front of a barn in the wind and weather. He did not realize that the “quilt” was being painted on a board and attached to the barn. We all got a kick out of that!!
First I had to decide what the block/quilt would look like. I had so many favorites and it took as much time to choose one block than it did the whole process of painting.
I chose this design because it resembles my first quilt project and the block was called “morning star”. This block is just a little different. The colors I started to use were red, white and blue but when I actually marked the pattern out I decided to go with my favorites which are burgundy and hunter green.
Next I had to cut the plywood (3/4″ good stuff”) but my husband did this for me after we measured about 10 times. Then I painted the board front and back with a high quality exterior high gloss white paint. I put four coats of paint on with a 24 hour delay between each coat. Once the last coat dried I divided the board up into one foot squares, drew in the design from the picture above and marked it off for the first color.
Taping the design entailed careful placement so that when the paint was added the points of each block were perfect and didn’t bleed into the next piece of the “puzzle”.
You can see the pencil marks I drew as a guide where to place the tape. Once it was taped up I painted another four coats of high quality exterior paint within the lines of the design. It was easy for me to see where the design was going but hubby was totally confused and just couldn’t see it coming together.
I added the additional colors step by step and it took about six weeks just to get the painting complete and then I covered the entire board front and back with four more coats of a high quality polyurethane and let each coat dry at least 48 hours between coats. Here is the finished quilt before mounting on the barn and after mounting on the barn. The last photo shows the farm sign, barn quilt and the century farm sign. I’m just thrilled with the results and I think my barn quilt is the first in the county!!
After three weeks of patiently taping, painting, drying, taping, painting, drying, taping, painting and more drying my barn quilt is finished. The block is called morning star and it’s not on the barn yet but hopefully will be in the next couple weeks. I may have to wait until hay season is over but I’m just so glad it’s finished. It will be placed on this barn which is at the entrance of our farm.
The colors chosen are my favorite though some family members says it looks too much like Christmas colors. I’m thrilled with the results and I’m anxious to get started on the next one. It may possibly be the first one up in our county and I’m hoping more people will join the “barn quilt trail”!!
I’ll post more pictures when it’s on the barn!!